Washington Football safety Ezekiel Turner now defending for NFL scouts despite missing NFL Combine invitation
The Washington Football team secondary launched three second round prospects into the NFL in the 2017 NFL Draft: cornerback Sidney Jones IV (despite injury), cornerback Kevin King (to Green Bay Packers), and Pro-Bowl starter safety Budda Baker (to Arizona Cardinals). All the while, safety Ezekiel Turner awaited his time. Playing behind Budda Baker, who is now an All-Pro NFL rookie at safety, somehow got lost in the translation.
And with the other starting role falling to now senior senior JoJo McIntosh truly did not leave much playing time to safety Ezekiel Turner. He did start this season, recording 55 tackles and one interception on a standout defense. And he has a stellar reputation on special teams. Will it be enough to woo interest from the NFL?
Defending before NFL Scouts
Now, he must stand out for NFL scouts in post-season games as he showcases his talents for NFL Scouts. In the 2018 NFLPA Collegiate game, he recorded two solo tackles and one pass broken up. For a safety in a promotional game format, that’s a pretty good performance. And he has one very important endorsement. That of his own defensive backs coach Jimmy Lake.
So proud of the journey that @zeke_turner has been on. He has fought and scratched for everything and now he will get his shot to shine on the next level. @NFL you are about to get a good one! pic.twitter.com/AAup2ArOYg
— Jimmy Lake (@CoachLakeUDUB) January 12, 2018
While this may turn into a bump up into a day two selection, it could be enough to trigger his selection on day three.
No NFL Combine awaits
Will it be enough? Perhaps, and perhaps not. But it certainly is garnering plenty of interest from football scouts, and for good reason. If he falls to late rounds, he is a true special teams contributor, with enough upside to compete for playing time. But he did not receive an invitation to the NFL Combine with his seven teammates to improve his standing in the upcoming draft.
Washington SS Ezekiel Turner 6’ 2” 214 lbs. Wearing No. 24. Potential undrafted prospect. JUCO transfer. Has 53 tackles, 1 TFL, 1 INT, 2 PBU in 2017. In three years has 97 tackles, 3.5 TFL, 0.5 sacks, 2 INTs, 2 PBU, 1 FF.
— Brian Carriveau (@BrianCarriveau) December 30, 2017
But he did join teammates Lavon Coleman (running back) and Will Dissly (tight end) in the NFLPA game.
The NFLPA Game.
— UW Football (@UW_Football) January 19, 2018
Last year’s Washington Pro Day followed closely behind the NFL Combine. You can expect an early March 2018 date to be set for the Fifth annual Washington Pro Combine Day this year.
Solid prospect who could be huge bargain for NFL team
Now we know that the Washington defensive secondary is coached by nearly-warlock-capable Jimmy Lake. And we also know that the entrance of former teammate to the NFL, Budda Baker, was met with All Pro designation as a rookie. Now, he will be joined by the young man who played behind him in college.
The Washington safety is all the part, showing no fear whenever he had the chance to take the football field. He is extremely versatile in that he is a day one special teams contributor, but he could line up on the football field in either a safety or an outside linebacker position. He has high quality tackling technique, and is versed in pass defense.
The same coaches who delivered Budda Baker, Kevin King, and Sidney Jones IV to the NFL coached Ezekiel Turner. So the input is the same for three outstanding NFL prospects. So why the disparity of projection? Simply stated, Turner did not put up enough film to satisfy NFL scouts.
His college experience with the Washington Football team was the same as the 2017 defensive backs. He delivered on the field when he had the opportunity to play. In the end, one NFL team will be happy they took a chance on this Washington Husky.